Of how he proposed a game
To children in an African village;
The game was played like this:
He places a fruit basket underneath a tree,
Then tells the children the first to reach it
Will be classed as the winner and can have it all,
But as soon as he calls out “Run!”
The children look at each other, then all grasp
Each other’s hands and run forward
All together, and then they all run back with the basket
And then they all sit down to enjoy it.
When the anthropologist asked them
Why they’d run like that, in unison,
Instead of their letting a winner take all
And have all the fruit for himself,
They’d said, “Ubuntu” “What’s Ubuntu?”
The anthropologist asked, bemused.
“How can one of us be happy,” they’d reply,
“If all the others are sad?”
Ubuntu’s an African philosophy
And the word Ubuntu translates:
“I am what I am because of who we all are.”
Or, being selfish makes no sense.
But its spirit’s forgotten if people are programmed
By money and competitive tyranny
To believe that the world is more efficiently run
By opulent psychopaths using violence.
Arms are exported to Africa to allow corporate power
To elbow its rivals for resources to one side:
Rivals for oil; for diamonds; for gold and for coltan,
But none of them can be as good for you as fruit.